Search resumes for missing autistic boy, 5, who fled party

Jayliel Vega Batista. Image NBC

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) – Police are recanvassing an eastern Pennsylvania neighborhood where a 5-year-old boy with autism wandered away from a New Year’s Eve party without shoes or a coat.

Allentown police Capt. Glen Dorney says 20 search-and-rescue dog teams are out searching for Jayliel Vega Batista.

But police are asking the general public to stop conducting their own searches, saying they’re disrupting the efforts of the trained search dogs and their teams.

Instead, police ask anyone who lives in the area to thoroughly search their own property and parked car periodically, in case the boy comes wandering in search of shelter.

Crews have been searching woods near the boy’s home and say a dog found the boy’s scent but wasn’t able to follow it to the boy. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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